Blog

RSS

Sweet Spring Giveaway: KitchenAid Mixer + $100 in Sprinkles! 0

KitchenAid Mixer + $100 Sprinkle Giveaway from Sweetapolita.com! Hello, hello! Happy times! I'm thrilled to do another giveaway! I am embarking upon some exciting stuff in the upcoming weeks, and I thought this giveaway would be an awesome way to kick things off! I will be giving you all the sweet details, broadcasting LIVE on Facebook, this Friday April 29th at 1pm EST. All you have to do, is head to my Sweetapolita Facebook page at 1PM, this Friday, where my friend Emma and I will be hanging out, chatting about cake, sprinkles, and more. I will be answering your burning baking questions LIVE, with the BIG ANNOUNCEMENT coming at the end of the broadcast. I’ll be sending you a couple of reminders — but you won’t want to miss this announcement. :) This is all very new to me, this whole Facebook live thing, but how incredibly fun to be connected to you all in real time! While I read all of your emails and blog post questions, I don't always get to reply, so this is an amazing chance to answer all of your questions and, well, just interact with a bunch of pretty darn awesome cake-loving folk (that's you guys). I'm looking forward to many-a-broadcast. So hey, hey, let's talk giveaway! Sweet Spring Giveaway on Sweetapolita.com I may have a slight pastel mixer addiction, but I am in love with this KitchenAid Artisan Stand Mixer in Lavender Cream! This is the dreamiest mixer I have ever seen. And since I can't possibly justify buying another one for me, I'd rather buy one for you! One lucky winner will receive this KitchenAid 5QT Artisan Stand Mixer in either this ethereal lavender shade, or the colour of your choice. And where there are mixers, there should be sprinkles! Sweetapolita's Sprinkle Shop Gift Card Giveaway on Sweetapolita.com I'm also giving this lucky caker a $100 Gift Card for Sweetapolita's Sprinkle Shop! So don't forget to meet me on Friday, April 29th at 1pm EST on my facebook page! See you then, and good luck with the giveaway! xo
  • Rosie Alyea

Glam Rock Layer Cake 0

Glam Rock Layer Cake by Sweetapolita Oh, hi! I'm here! And I come bearing twinkly black cake--Glam Rock Layer Cake, to be exact. A sweet celebration of contrast and colour! As you probably remember, I spend most of my days now in the shop packing orders and making sprinkle medleys, which means that my day is literally filled with every colour in the universe. This is about as much fun as you would think, but it always has me wondering what baked goods would best bring these colour combinations to life, since that is why we love and collect sprinkles, right? They are pretty charming on their own, all candy-like and pretty, but their lives aren't really complete until they find their spot to shine. And working in a "sprinkle factory," I probably forget this more than anyone! I just think the world is a better place by the mere existence of them ;). Glam Rock Twinkle Sprinkle Medley by Sweetapolita I named these sprinkles Glam Rock (Twinkle Sprinkle Medley) because they really do bring me back to my "glam rock-ish" teenage life (and yep, all of the components are not only edible, but sweet and tasty). As a teen in the late 80s/early 90s, I was as devoted to rainbows, showy rock stars and glam metal bands as one frosty-haired girl should be. And I don't see one good reason why there shouldn't be a sprinkle mix to celebrate it. ;) But no matter what we call it, bright colours = happy, and that's what works. This colour combination could represent so many things, and truth-be-told, I've been dying to make a jet-black frosting cake! So let's talk about the frosting. Tinting frosting black (including fondant, although I prefer to purchase black fondant) can be tricky. Ideally, you are starting with chocolate frosting--when you can start with chocolate frosting (I'm not sure there is really any other way) you're halfway there! True black is likely the most difficult colour to achieve; sure, we could use oodles and oodles of black food colouring, but as anyone who has tried to tint frosting an intense red or black (and sometimes other dark colours), even using a concentrated gel paste, has likely discovered that it is possible but at the cost of a very off-putting after (sometimes not-so-after) taste. Oh, man. Jet Black Frosting via Sweetapolita Colouring black frosting is surprisingly simple, but I think the secret is the black cocoa powder. Remember we used the black cocoa powder a few times in the last few months? Well, first in the Midnight Cookies & Cream Layer Cake layers, and then most recently in the Dark & Dreamy Fudge Layer Cake--both in the cake layers and the frosting. Well that intensity with dark and decadent cocoa is what gives us such a head start. I started with a variation on this super dark and glossy fudge frosting (a slightly sweeter version) from my Dark & Dreamy Double Fudge Cupcakes. I think what makes this frosting so stunning is the gloss--matte black is beautiful too, but I think it's paramount that the frosting on a cake (or any dessert) look truly appealing and luscious. I'd hate to put so much love into something just to have no one actually want to eat it. Eeeek! So to our swirls of glossy dark fudge frosting, we add a small amount of a very concentrated black gel paste--since I only used one (AmeriColor Super Black), I can't really comment on how other brands would do (although, I might avoid Wilton brand colours). Anyway, I started with 1/2 teaspoon of the gel paste, but in the end I think I used a total of about 1 teaspoon. Depending on the chocolate you use in your frosting, and some other mysterious factors, you might need more, which is okay. Just make sure that you don't add too much that your frosting tastes off.  But, wait! Before you keep adding and adding more colour, let what you've started with "process." Seriously, this part is key! The goal here is to use as little as possible so the taste is undetectable (and I'm pretty certain the less colour paste we ingest in life, the better). Now all colours intensify after they sit for a while, so this applies to anytime you are colouring frosting, but since we really want to maximize the small amount of black paste we're adding, I say wait about 15 minutes if you can. I'm pretty sure the frosting on my cake is still getting blacker as we speak (literally). Glam Rock Layer Cake by Sweetapolita Now that all said, this is a very rich frosting to start with, and a pretty large batch, so don't fret if it takes more black paste than you hoped. Particularly if you can't find "black" cocoa powder--this stuff literally is black in colour, which is what we need. Dark cocoa powder is better than nothing, but it will just require more paste. Because the frosting is so, so glossy, I was tempted to leave the top bare (as above), but I opted to cover it in the end, because the sides of the cake were mostly exposed, which gives us a chance to admire the glorious sheen. So, let's talk about sprinkling the sides of a cake! So many of you have reached out to me about your issues getting the sprinkles to adhere to your cakes, so I want to chat about that for a minute too. In my experience, there are 2 main factors at play when we sprinkle the sides of a cake: the frosting consistency/temperature and the frosting texture. In terms of consistency, I find that, typically, as long as your frosting is sticky but not "wet" feeling, the sprinkles should stick just fine. In other words, if your frosting is very soft and spreadable, and you've just applied the frosting to the cake, you will want to chill it for a few moments until that initial gooey-ness has gone away. This can take as little as 5 minutes in the fridge, depending on the frosting. See, if the frosting is too gooey, the sprinkles will stick beautifully, but you will end up with frosting on your hands, ultimately smearing it onto the sprinkles you apply over and over. That all said, the actual frosting you use has a lot to do with the "sprinkle stickability" as well. I have had great success with chocolate frostings of all kinds, meringue buttercreams of all kinds, and some vanilla frostings. Just a note that sprinkles don't like "crusting buttercream." While I don't really use crusting buttercream, I know from some seeing very sugary vanilla frostings that tend to almost crust when cold (that sort of rough, dry finish from all of the confectioners' sugar and often shortening), that sprinkles just won't want to stick. Although, if you were to do the sprinkling immediately after you frosted the cake, I imagine that would work in most cases. Essentially, no matter what the frosting, tacky is the ticket!  Glam Rock Layer Cake by Sweetapolita I find what works best for applying the sprinkles is to, first off, always build your cake on a thin-but-sturdy cake board, so you can hold the cake from the bottom. I hold the cake in my left hand over a tray, and then with my right hand (dominant), I grab sprinkles from a big bowl and then gently press them onto the bottom of the cake, letting the excess fall to the tray. Once I have gone all the way around, I pour the excess sprinkles from the tray back into the bowl/bottle. Once you get the hang of it, you'll want to sprinkle every cake in the universe Glam Rock Layer Cake by Sweetapolita For the top of a cake with a piped border of any kind, you'll want to chill the cake until the border is firm to the touch (about 30 minutes, usually). Since we don't need the top of the cake to be super sticky (thank you gravity), we can just add the sprinkles to the surface--once the cake comes to room temperature for serving, those sprinkles will magically stick. You can also gently press down on them with your hand to ensure they stick before slicing the cake (although the tinker-patter-kaplink of falling sprinkles whilst slicing a layer cake has a charm of its own). Glam Rock Layer Cake by Sweetapolita I should mention that for anything super tiny or light, such as nonpareils and edible stars/squares, etc. You'll want to go in after and "throw" them where you want them. You can also add more of the larger sprinkles where you want them, if there are some empty spots or if you feel the artistic need to really finish the job the way you see fit. It's kind of amazing how much visual power the right sprinkles have--imagine this cake all black, and then minutes later bursting with colour, contrast and texture. It's so simple but so effective. Glam Rock Layer Cake by Sweetapolita And, oh yes! There *is* an inside to the cake :). To carry our "glam rock" theme throughout, these dark chocolate butter cake layers are black as night with no added colour--yay! Thanks again to our new friend, black cocoa powder. I used the a variation on the chocolate butter cake in my book, because it's unthinkably tender and flavourful--particularly with the dark cocoa powder. Intensely chocolate. While the chocolate butter cake recipe can be baked in 3 x 8-inch round pans, I opted to bake them in 4 x 7-inch round pans for added height and a slight smaller diameter. You could definitely go the 3 x 8-inch round pans though, if you don't have the 7s. Galaxy Frosting via Sweetapolita For the inside frosting I just went with a sweet vanilla frosting which I tinted a vibrant purple (much like when we made the Galaxy Layer Cake). I love this purple! You can boost it or go a little easier on the colouring for a more pastel effect (as in the photo above), but I love the tone of it. I use equal parts AmeriColor Regal Purple and Electric Purple, and it creates a really pleasant shade. Glam Rock Layer Cake by Sweetapolita I'd say this cake is all about contrast, and I just love the striking look of the purple stripes against the black cake and of course the black frosting and sprinkles. It's my kind of party. Glam Rock Layer Cake by Sweetapolita Sprinkles! So let's make this Glam Rock Layer Cake! November 8, 2016 NOTE: I have modified the recipe for the black frosting slightly, as some folks were having issues with the frosting being too soft. Happy baking!

Glam Rock Layer Cake

Super dark, moist and buttery chocolate cake layers filled with colourful vanilla frosting and covered in a decadent jet-black glossy fudge frosting. And let's not forget the sprinkles!

For the "Black" Dark Chocolate Butter Cake layers:

  • 2 1/3 cups 315 g all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup plus one tablespoon (100 g best-quality black cocoa powder)
  • 1 1 /2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 cups 360 ml buttermilk, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup 120 ml hot coffee OR very hot water
  • 1 cup 227 g unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 2 1/2 cups 560 g packed light brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 4 large eggs (room temperature)
  • 1/4 cup 60 g mayonnaise, room temperature
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon distilled white vinegar

For the (purple frosting) Vanilla Frosting:

  • 1 cup 227 g unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 3 cups 375 g confectioners' sugar, sifted
  • 1/4 cup 60 ml whipping cream (heavy cream) or milk
  • 2 tablespoons water (plus more if needed)
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • Pinch of salt
  • Few drops each AmeriColor Soft Gel Paste Color in Electric Purple and Regal Purple

For the Glossy Black Fudge Frosting:

  • 2 cups 454 g unsalted butter, softened
  • 4 cups 500 g confectioners' sugar
  • 3/4 cup 90 g premium dark (preferably black) cocoa powder (I used Guittard Noir)
  • 1/2 cup 120 ml hot water
  • 1/2 cup 120 ml sour cream
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract (I used Nielsen-Massey)
  • Generous pinch of salt
  • 8 ounces 240 g premium dark (but not extra dark) chocolate, chopped or chips, melted (I used Callebaut Callets)
  • Soft gel paste color (in Super Black (or other concentrated black gel color of your choice, but this one is the only I can promise works for black coloring))
  • Sprinkles of your choice (1-2 cups, depending on size of the sprinkles)
  • You will also need:
  • 1 large pastry bag (disposable or reusable)
  • Large plain round pastry tip (I use Ateco #809)
  • Sprinkles of your choice (1-2 cups, depending on size of the sprinkles--see Sweetapolita's Notes)

For the "Black" Dark Chocolate Butter Cake layers:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350F (180C). Spray two 7"x2" round cake pans (to be used twice for 4 layers) with baking spray (such as Pam for Baking), or grease the bottoms and add parchment rounds to each.
  2. In a large bowl or atop a large piece of parchment paper, sift together the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder and salt. In a large measuring glass with a spout, mix together the buttermilk and coffee/water. Set aside.
  3. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, or using a handheld mixer, beat the butter and brown sugar on medium speed until very light and fluffy, about 8 minutes. Add the vanilla and beat well. Add the eggs one at a time, mixing well (about 30 seconds) and scraping the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula after each addition.
  4. Lower the speed to the lowest setting and add one third of the dry mixture until just combined, and add half of the buttermilk mixture. Repeat with the remaining flour and buttermilk mixtures. Remove the bowl from the stand mixer, and whisk in the mayonnaise.
  5. In a small bowl combine the baking soda and vinegar, and quickly add to the batter. Whisk until smooth, about 30 seconds. Divide one-quarter of the batter into each pan (this should weigh about 430 grams if you are using a digital scale).
  6. Bake the first two layers in the center of the oven until a wooden pick comes out with a few crumbs, 24-27 minutes. Let the cake layers cool on a wire rack for 10 minutes, and then gently invert onto the wire rack. Wipe the pans clean and repeat with the final layers. Let all of the layers cool completely. The cake layers will keep wrapped tightly in plastic wrap at room temperature for up to 3 days.

For the (purple filling) Vanilla Frosting:

  1. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter on medium speed until very pale and creamy, about 8 minutes. Reduce the speed to low, and gradually add the confectioners' sugar, heavy cream, vanilla and salt. Beat for 1 minute.
  2. Increase the speed to medium-high and beat until very light and fluffy, about 6 minutes. Add a few drops of each AmeriColor Regal Purple and Electric Purple until desired shade is achieved. Frosting with keep in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Bring chilled frosting to room temperature and beat on low speed to soften. If necessary, you can warm the frosting in a heatproof container in the microwave in 10-second intervals, stirring after each one, until smooth and spreadable.

For the Glossy Black Fudge Frosting:

    If you have a food processor:

    1. Add all of the ingredients, except the melted chocolate and black food color, into the food processor, and pulse until everything is incorporated. Add the melted chocolate and pulse until smooth. Add a small amount of the black color (about 1/2 teaspoon). Pulse until combined. Let sit for about 15 minutes (the color will take awhile to process--it's best to let it sit rather than adding more and more right away). Add more color if necessary, until desired black tint is achieved.

    If you are using a stand mixer or handheld mixer:

    1. In a bowl of stand mixer fitted with paddle attachment, or with a handheld mixer, beat the butter on medium speed until pale and fluffy, about 6 minutes. Sift together the confectioners' sugar and cocoa powder. Reduce to speed to low, and add the confectioners' sugar, cocoa powder, water, sour cream, vanilla, and salt and beat until incorporated, about 1 minute. Increase the speed to medium and beat for 2 more minutes. Add the melted chocolate and beat on medium speed until smooth, about 1 minute. Add a small amount of the black color (about 1 teaspoon). Pulse until combined. Let sit for about 15 minutes (the color will take awhile to process--it's best to let it sit rather than adding more and more right away). Add more color if necessary, until desired black tint is achieved--remember that it continues to darken over time.

    Assembly of the Glam Rock Layer Cake:

    1. Put your first cake layer top-up on an 7" round cake board or 9" plate, and spread one-third of the purple frosting on top. Repeat with all of the layers, placing the final cake layer top-down. Make sure that your layers are straight and lined up with the ones below. Wrap the cake in plastic wrap and chill for at least 15 minutes.
    2. Remove the cake from the fridge and, using a turntable, if possible, frost entire outside of cake with a thin layer of the black frosting to seal in the crumbs. Chill until the frosting begins to firm-up, about 30 minutes.
    3. Remove the cake from the fridge and return it to the turntable. Cover the cake with a thick, even and smooth layer of the black frosting using an offset spatula, reserving about 1 1/2 cups of frosting for the piped top border. Return the cake to the fridge and chill for another 20-30 minutes.
    4. You will want the frosting for the buttercream "poof" border to be very soft, in order to achieve the appealing peaks. Warm frosting in a small heatproof bowl for about 8-10 seconds, and stir. Fill a pastry bag fitted with a large plain round tip with the softened frosting and pipe some buttercream "poofs" around the top perimeter of the cake.
    5. Pour your sprinkles into a medium bowl and gently press sprinkles onto the bottom third of the cake, all the way around, letting the excess fall back into the bowl. You can also put the cake on a cookie sheet and let the excess sprinkles fall onto the sheet. Return the cake to the fridge until the buttercream poofs are very firm, about 30 minutes. Pour more sprinkles atop the flat exposed surface of the top of the cake. Cake will keep covered at room temperature for up to 3 days. Serve at room temperature.
    Sweetapolita's Notes:
    • As I mentioned above, for the black cocoa powder used in both the cake layers and the black frosting for this cake, I used Guittard Cocoa Noir (Black) - 5 lbs (a big tub because I go through it quickly), but you can also find Black Cocoa Powder on Amazon. You might recall I usually use a very dark (but not black) cocoa powder (Cacao Barry Cocoa Powder Extra Brute) for all of my chocolate baked goods, which also works very well, tastes amazing, and is quite dark in itself, with a rich red hue. The black cocoa powder just adds more of a midnight black effect, which I love. And, of course, the taste is also incredibly deep, dark and wonderful. Just know that it's very intense! This is a great time to pair things like sugary frostings and candy sprinkles :).
    • For the dark chocolate in the frosting, I use Callebaut Semi-Sweet Dark Chocolate in callet form (fancy word for chips)--they taste incredible and are easy to measure & melt.
    • I use Fat Daddio’s Anodized Aluminum Round Cake Pans for all of my cake layers. For this cake I used the 7-inch x 2-inch round cake pans, because I wanted to cake layers to be a little taller, yielding a taller cake. You can bake this cake in three 8-inch round pans, if you prefer.
    • For the poofs on top of the cake, remember that the key is very soft frosting and an extra large round plain tip (I used Ateco #809). And, as always, if you make a mistake or aren't happy with your poofs, you can simply remove it and do it again. I've been known to do this several times! Haha.
    • I always use a Silver Embossed Round Thin Board for my cakes--it's perfect for moving the cake to and fro while decorating, and of course transporting.
    • I tend to use AmeriColor soft gels paste colours for the most part, and I find their Super Black Americolor Soft Gel Paste does the trick (I also use this in black velvet cake). You can certainly use another brand if you feel it offers a deep black hue with no taste. For the purple frosting, I used equal parts of the Regal Purple and Electric Purple (like we did back with the Galaxy Cake).
    • For the sprinkles, I used Sweetapolita Glam Rock Twinkle Sprinkle Medley, but of course you can use any sprinkles you like! I just love this mix because of the serious colours and metallic bits. Certainly a show-stopper!
    • If you prefer to use your own mix, you can always add just Edible Silver Stars for a dose of magic.
    • The cake stand used in these photos is a Pink Milk Glass Cake Stand by Mosser. I have this in several colours, and I love them!
    Happy caking, friends! See you soon!
    • Rosie Alyea

    Birthday Cake Fudge 0

    Birthday Cake Fudge via Sweetapolita Hello, hello! As you may already know, a few months ago, my fellow baker and  sprinkle-sister-from-another-mister, Sally, released her second cookbook, entitled Sally's Candy Addiction: Tasty Truffles, Fudges & Treats for Your Sweet-Tooth Fix. If you already follow Sally's blog and/or have her first book, Sally's Baking Addiction (named after her blog), then you know how incredibly decadent and spot on her recipes are; if you don't, oh you must! Sally's warm and approachable voice, easy to follow recipes and stunning photography are only some of the reasons she is such an undeniable success, and I'm proud to call her a friend. When I first got my hands on her new book, I fell in love with the cover! And I knew that the first thing I had to make was whatever that delightfully-sprinkled, layered concoction was :). Turns out it was her Birthday Cake Fudge . . . so off I went to buy condensed milk and marshmallow creme! Sally's Candy Addiction Here's the cover of the book--adorable and beyond. And while an adorable cover laden with sprinkles is often enough to get me to buy a book (guilty), I know from making several of the recipes from her blog (and first book) that this book would be literally packed cover to cover with irresistible and totally doable candy goodness. With everything from those classics we all love to eat but don't always know how to make (some that may even seem a little intimidating), such as Caramel Turtles, Saltwater Taffy and Salted English Toffee all the way to uniquely-Sallyesque yumminess, like Crazy Candy Deep-Dish Cookie Cake and Chocolate Chip Cookie Bark, this book is unreal. Birthday Cake Fudge via Sweeatpolita Needless to say it really was hard for me to decide which recipe to make and share with you! So I went back to my initial enchantment with the Birthday Cake Fudge. After reading the recipe, I loved how simple it was, and that it was something my cakelets could help me make. See, that's not always as easy as it sounds . . . with the cakelets getting bigger (almost 7 and 9--someone please make it stop), I can't just sit them on the counter and let them crack an egg or dump sugar in a bowl; they want to really get in there and partake. This recipe, and so many of Sally's recipes are perfect for cakelet helpers. So what exactly is Birthday Cake Fudge? Well, it's a layer of dark (semi-sweet) chocolate fudge, made with the ooey-gooey-awesomeness of sweetened condensed milk, dark chocolate and marshmallow creme topped with a white chocolate fudge layer made the same way, but with--you guessed it--white chocolate, but this time we get to fold in sprinkles and, well, sprinkle more sprinkles on top before chilling for a few hours. Done. This blows my mind, truly, how quick and simple such decadence can be. I should note that I actually doubled the white chocolate fudge layer recipe (not the chocolate layer, just the white chocolate layer), for an extra thick white layer, but it would be equally as incredible with the recipe as it is listed! Birthday Cake Fudge via Sweetapolita This fudge is incredibly rich, sweet, dense and creamy; and the sprinkles, as always, magically add a major dose of happy. After slicing our batch into lovely squares, the girls and I packed them up to gift to their teachers. I love gifting sweets! It's a great way to bake and make, but to still eat sugar in less-than-insane quantities :). So let's make some fudge! Remember, if you want to make the white chocolate fudge layer thick as they are in my photos, you'll want to double just the white chocolate fudge part the recipe. And good news--more room for sprinklage!

    Birthday Cake Fudge from Sally's Candy Addiction

    Birthday Cake Fudge from the book Sally's Candy Addiction: Tasty Truffles, Fudges & Treats for Your Sweet-Tooth Fix Sally's Notes: What you see here is the fudge version of chocolate birthday cake with vanilla frosting. The creamy chocolate fudge layer is topped off with a vanilla white chocolate marshmallow fudge layer, or "frosting," as I like to call it! I fold sprinkles into the top layer, which transforms the sweet dessert into a party. Make sure you use sprinkles (a.k.a. jimmies) and not nonpareils (the little ball sprinkles). Nonpareils can be used to decorate the top of the fudge, but do not mix them in the white layer, as their color will bleed.

    Chocolate Fudge Layer:

    • 1 1/2 cups 273g semi-sweet chocolate chips
    • 1/2 x 14oz (198g can full-fat sweetened condensed milk)
    • 2 tbsp marshmallow crème

    White Fudge Layer:

    • 1 1/2 cups 273g white chocolate chips
    • 1/2 cup plus 1 tbsp (1/2 x 14oz can; 198g full-fat sweetened condensed milk)
    • 2 tbsp marshmallow creme
    • 1 tsp vanilla extract
    • 1/3 cup 53g plus 1 tbsp sprinkles, rainbow or any color, divided

    Special Equipment:

    • 8- in square (20cm baking pan)
    1. Line an 8-in (20cm) square baking pan with aluminum foil, leaving enough overhang on the sides to easily remove the fudge once it has set. Set aside.

    Make the Chocolate Fudge Layer:

    1. Combine the semi-sweet chocolate chips, sweetened condensed milk, and marshmallow crème in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Stir constantly with a rubber spatula or wooden spoon as the chocolate chips melt. Once the mixture is smooth and the chips have melted, remove pan from the heat. The mixture will be extremely thick. Pour into the prepared pan, smoothing down the top to make 1 even layer. Set aside. You can either wash, dry and reuse the same saucepan for the next layer or use a new, similar-size saucepan.

    Make the White Fudge Layer:

    1. Combine the white chocolate chips, sweetened condensed milk, marshmallow crème in a medium-size saucepan over medium heat. The mixture will be extremely thick. Stir in the vanilla extract and once fully combined, very gently fold in 1/3 cup (53g) of the sprinkles. Do not stir too much or the color from the sprinkles could bleed. Pour on top of the chocolate layer, smoothing down the top to make 1 even layer. Decorate with remaining 1 tbsp sprinkles while the fudge is still warm and wet.
    2. Cover with aluminum foil and refrigerate for 4 hours or until set. Alternatively, you can let the covered fudge sit at room temperature overnight to set. Once set, remove the fudge from the pan by lifting out the aluminum foil. Invert the fudge onto a cutting board, peel away foil, then turn the fudge back over. Using a large sharp knife, slice the fudge into 1-in (2.5cm) squares. (If the fudge has been in the refrigerator for longer than 4 hours, it might be quite stiff; if so, allow to sit at room temperature for 20 minutes before cutting.)
    Sweetapolita's Notes: See you soon!  
    • Rosie Alyea

    Dark & Dreamy Double Fudge Cupcakes 0

    Dark & Dreamy Chocolate Cupcakes via Sweetapolita Hello, hello! Well, it's been a chocolatey weekend, with Valentine's Day and all, and my cakelets and I were just spending it at home with a warm fire (it's was -8°F/-22°C), iPads, music, and all sorts of other around-the-house comforts. It seemed like a good day to make something super-simple and comforting, so I made a batch of these "Dark & Dreamy Chocolate Fudge Cupcakes," which are essentially the darkest of moist, one-bowl chocolate cupcakes and topped with the glossy fudge frosting we all love to the moon and back. Besides the gloriously intense chocolate flavour and and mind-blowing texture these simple cakes have, they are also one of my favourites because they are the perfect way to show off sprinkles. The contrast of those lustrous swirls of midnight chocolate frosting and pastel sprinkles is, quite frankly, what dreams are made of :).  Dark & Dreamy Chocolate Fudge Layer Cake via Sweetapolita You might remember that I recently made this Dark & Dreamy Chocolate Fudge Layer Cake, and these cupcakes are essentially the cupcake version of that cake. While that cake is very quick and simple to make, sometimes cupcakes--for many a reason--are the answer. You know? Dark & Dreamy Chocolate Cupcakes via Sweetapolita And one of those reasons is cakelets! They love cupcakes. They just do. Dessert trends--macarons, cake pops, meringues and more--alway entice, but I'm convinced cakelets around the globe will always love cupcakes--it's just the way life is. To make it a little more interesting, I baked these cupcakes in a jumbo muffin/cupcake pan, which is exactly the size of two standard cupcakes (and, incidentally, what I also refer to as a "cakelet"), so it yields a perfect 6. In other news, cakelet Reese is almost 9! How is that possible? She was 3 1/2 when I started this blog . . . Dark Fudge Frosting via Sweetapolita As always, you can even let your cakelets loose to decorate these on their own, or you can fancy them up for parties and even weddings (think sparkly twinkles on these little towers of glistening yumminess--perfection!). I love this frosting because it is so wonderfully spreadable. While I do enjoy the intensity of a good ganache (that melted madness of pure heavy cream and chocolate), I find it looses its lustre and is just too heavy. Of course it just depends, but the velvety-ness of this frosting with the generous dollop of sour cream in there (as I've said before--you don't taste it specifically, but rather relish in the mysterious glide and creaminess it offers) is like no other. The addition of dark cocoa powder along with melted chocolate gives it a double boost of the good stuff, and together the whole darn situation is magical. Dark & Dreamy Chocolate Cupcakes via Sweetapolita See what I mean? For the true chocolate lover, this as it is could be considered perfection, but of course it's just screaming for sprinkles too. I left one special cupcake unsprinkled for my *gasp* anti-sprinkle cakelet who can't eat anything with sprinkles (but we love her anyway). It's a texture thing, which I totally get (I liken this to my raisin-in-muffins issue). The good news is she also refuses to eat candy of any kind, so I got lucky there. :) I think the key is just adding a few sprinkles--enough to embellish, but not so many that you loose the visual of the notable gloss and splendid swirls. This, I might add, is not my strong suit! Dark & Dreamy Chocolate Fudge Cupcakes via Sweetapolita Come on! Look at the inside of the sucker. And to think that cupcake takes less than 5 minutes to prepare, and 20 to bake. Now that is magic. Dark & Dreamy Chocolate Fudge Cake via Sweetapolita I really do. You guys are amazing, and I want to say thanks again for all of your kind emails and messages about my personal life--that means more than you know! Here's the recipe for these towers of dreaminess:

    Dark & Dreamy Double Fudge Cupcakes

    Super-moist, homemade dark-as--night chocolate cupcakes, frosted with swirls of glossy, creamy and super-dark fudge frosting and topped with pastel sprinkles.

    For the cupcakes:

    • 3/4 cup 95 g all-purpose flour
    • 3/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon (170 g superfine sugar (or regular granulated sugar, see Sweetapolita's Notes))
    • 1/2 cup 60 g extra dark OR dark Dutch-process cocoa powder
    • 1 teaspoon baking soda
    • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
    • 1/2 teaspoon salt
    • 1/2 cup 120 ml buttermilk, room temperature
    • 1/3 cup 80 ml hot coffee OR boiling water
    • 3 tablespoons 45 ml vegetable oil
    • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
    • 1 egg (room temperature)

    For the frosting:

    • 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons (255 g unsalted butter, softened)
    • 1 cup 125 g confectioners' sugar
    • 1/3 cup 40 g premium dark cocoa powder (I used Guittard Noir)
    • 1/4 cup 60 ml hot water
    • 1/4 cup 60 ml sour cream OR plain Greek Yogurt
    • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract (I used Nielsen-Massey)
    • Generous pinch of salt
    • 5 ounces 150 g premium dark (but not extra dark) chocolate, chopped or chips, melted (I used Callebaut Callets)
    • Your favourite sprinkles (I used the Jersey Shore Sprinkle Medley from my shop)
    • You will also need:
    • 1 large pastry bag (disposable or reusable)
    • Large plain round pastry tip (I use Ateco #809)

    For the cupcakes:

    1. Preheat oven to 360°F (183°C). Line a jumbo muffin tin with the appropriate liners, or a standard cupcake pan with your favourite cupcake liners.
    2. In the large bowl, sift flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.
    3. In a medium bowl or measuring cup, combine the buttermilk, coffee, oil, egg and vanilla.
    4. Add liquid mixture to dry ingredients and whisk until smooth, about 1 minute. Divide batter among the liners (about 1/2 full for jumbo and 2/3 full for standard).
    5. Bake until a wooden pick inserted into the centre of the cupcake comes out with a only a few crumbs, about 23 minutes for jumbo and 18-20 minutes for standard size. Try not to over-bake. Let cupcakes cool in pan on a wire rack for 10 minutes, and then turn onto rack to cool completely.

    For the frosting:

      If you have a food processor:

      1. Add all of the ingredients, except the melted chocolate, into the food processor, and pulse until everything is incorporated. Add the melted chocolate and pulse until smooth.

      If you are using a stand mixer or handheld mixer:

      1. In a bowl of stand mixer fitted with paddle attachment, or with a handheld mixer, beat the butter on medium speed until pale and fluffy, about 6 minutes. Sift together the confectioners' sugar and cocoa powder. Reduce to speed to low, and add the confectioners' sugar, cocoa powder, water, sour cream, vanilla, and salt and beat until incorporated, about 1 minute. Increase the speed to medium and beat for 2 more minutes.
      2. Add the melted chocolate and beat on medium speed until smooth, about 1 minute.

      Decorate the cupcakes:

      1. Fit a large (I use 18") pastry bag with a a plain large round tip. Fill the bag with the frosting, push out any excess air, and twist and secure the top of the bag. Do a test dollop of the frosting back into the bowl to check for consistency--if the frosting is too loose, pop the bag into the fridge for a few minutes (not more than a few, or it will firm up too much). Once the frosting has firmed up just slightly, pipe a generous swirl of frosting atop each cupcake and top with your favourite sprinkles.
      2. Keep at room temperature for up to 3 days.
      Sweetapolita's Notes:
      • As I've mentioned before, for the extra dark cocoa powder, I use Guittard Noir Cocoa Powder (I have this big tub because I go through it so fast), but you can also find Black Cocoa Powder on Amazon. You probably remember that I usually use a very dark (but not black) cocoa powder (Cacao Barry Cocoa Powder Extra Brute) for all of my chocolate baked goods, which also works very well, tastes amazing, and is quite dark in itself. The black cocoa powder just adds more of a midnight black effect, which I love. And, of course, the taste is also incredibly deep, dark and wonderful. And really, sometimes change is fun! :)
      • I always use superfine sugar for baking--this just means that it is a finer granule of sugar, which distributes evenly and creates a consistent, small crumb. That all said, regular sugar certainly does the trick! You can purchase it superfine, but I buy regular granulated sugar and process it in the food processor for about 1 minute before putting the sugar in my canister for baking.
      • I use this Jumbo Muffin Pan (again, it takes the equivalent of a 12-standard cupcake recipe batter).
      • For this recipe, I used these Jumbo Brown Cupcake Liners.
      • For the swirls atop of the cupcakes, remember again that the key is very soft frosting and an extra large round plain tip (I used Ateco #809). And, as always, if you make a mistake or aren’t totally pleased (never ;)) with your swirls , you can simply (but carefully) remove and try it again.
      • The sprinkles I used on these cupcake are the Jersey Shore Sprinkle Medley from my shop, but as always--all sprinkles are wonderful!
      • The "I LOVE YOUR MORE THAN SPRINKLES" toppers we made just for fun (my cakelets are obsessed with rolling and cutting fondant) with a simple heart cutter, rolled fondant tinted with a bit of AmeriColor Turquoise and this pretty awesome letter embossing tool. 
      • Oh, and for those who were asking via Instagram, Reese's "Make Today Amazing" sweater in the photo above was from Target, but sadly they don't have it anymore (I think we got that in Watertown back in early fall 2015).
      Happy Baking! See you soon!
      • Rosie Alyea

      Marshmallow Sprinkle Sandwiches 0

      Marshmallow Sprinkle Sandwiches by Sweetapolita Sprinkles! A whole lot of them. And where there are sprinkles there must be something gloriously gooey or spreadable for them to adhere to, so heaps of homemade vanilla bean marshmallow frosting and premium melted chocolate are a good start! :) I made these Marshmallow Sprinkle Sandwiches as a quick-fix delight--they take about 15 minutes to make total. (And if you opted to make my last cake, the Banana-Graham S'mores Cake Supreme, there is a good chance you're still working on it, hehe.) Sometimes fast is fab! I used store-bought chocolate ice cream sandwich cookies, whipped up a batch of vanilla bean marshmallow frosting, piped a huge dollop between two cookies, then another on top (if we're going to make sandwiches with thin cookies, double-decker is a must, right?). I melted some chocolate with oil for a shiny coating--I did a few with milk chocolate and another batch with semisweet (dark 53% cocoa solids) just for fun, dipped in once side of the sandwich, and then covered the chocolate areas with--you guessed it--sprinklage! This is such a great way to showcase your favourite sprinkles, and kids everyone will go nutty for these! Marshmallow Sprinkle Sandwiches by Sweetapolita The main step to this treat is really just the homemade marshmallow frosting, which is essentially meringue (Swiss to be exact, since we are heating the egg whites and sugar before whipping) with a bit of light corn syrup. I always use a premium pure vanilla extract or vanilla bean paste because it's such a simple frosting that is all about the that meringuey-vanilla taste. The vanilla bean paste boasts those gorgeous little flecks we all love, which looks particularly appealing in this billowy, snow-white frosting. (Now, of course these are "ice cream sandwich" cookies, so a more classic ice cream sandwich would be utterly delightful as well!) Once the frosting is whipped up (literally), we get our cookie wafers, melted chocolate, sprinkles and piping bag ready to go. Of course if you were using homemade cookies or wafers, you would want to ensure they were completely cooled before building your sandwiches. Just a note that since these are ice cream sandwich wafers, they soften up once filled, so if you were to use a crispy cookie of another kind, they would stay more firm. You might remember these Red Velvet Moon Pies I made this time last year, which are very similar but using a homemade cookie--also incredible! Just more time-consuming. And now the (extra) fun part! Marshmallow Sprinkle Sandwiches by Sweetapolita We just lay out 6 of the cookies face up on a wax-paper lined baking sheet, fill the pastry bag with the frosting and simply pipe a big ole' dollop of frosting in the middle of each cookie (for consistency, be sure to count while you pipe each dollop--I counted to three for each one). Top each with another cookie, and then do it again on top to create a double-decker. Since the marshmallow frosting is a serious "glue," you don't need to wait to dip, dunk and sprinkle. We can just get right to it (since we all know this is the best part!). Twinkle Sprinkle Medleys by Sweetapolita The hardest part of this whole operation is going to be choosing your sprinkles--trust me. But it's kind of impossible to go wrong! I opted for some of my fancier medleys and love the way the gold bits looks against the dark chocolate. Classic rainbow sprinkles, Valentine's sprinkles, or any sprinkle in the universe will work. I used a few from my shop collection (see my notes at bottom of post for which ones). Marshmallow Sprinkle Sandwiches by Sweetapolita Talk about a beautiful mess! We dip one end of each cookie into the melted chocolate coating, let the excess drip back into the bowl, place the sandwich back on the wax-paper and start a sprinklin'. For the sides, you'll want to "throw" the sprinkles at them. All of the excess sprinkles can be put back in their bottles for later use, so you can be as heavy-handed as you want with the tossing. I added one of those gorgeous pearlescent 18mm krispie-filled dragées to each one (see Sweetapolita's Notes below for source) because they are everything. That said, you can pretty much stick any sweet you love to the melted chocolate--the more variance in the mix the better, I think. As you can see above, I went sort of crazy. Marshmallow Sprinkle Sandwiches by Sweetapolita As you can imagine, this is such a fun project for cakelets. There's no waiting involved--it's quick and easy, colourful, yummy beyond and messy--what more could a kid ask for? And of course the kid in all of us urgently needs these in his or her life. Marshmallow Sprinkle Sandwiches by Sweetapolita Serve them up with a cup of tea, hot chocolate and marshmallows, cappuccino or just a big dose of happy. :) Here's the recipe:

      Sprinkle Sandwiches

      Gooey, double-decker marshmallow filled sandwiches coated with premium dark or milk chocolate and embellished with heaps of colourful sprinkles.

      For the Vanilla Bean Marshmallow Frosting:

      • 4 egg whites
      • 1 cup 200 g superfine sugar
      • 1 tablespoon light corn syrup
      • Pinch of cream of tartar
      • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract or vanilla bean paste

      For the Chocolate Coating:

      • 8 ounces 240 g best-quality dark or milk chocolate, chopped or callets
      • 3 tablespoons 45 ml vegetable oil

      You will also need:

      • 12 Store-bought ice cream sandwich cookies plus a few extra in case of breakage OR homemade cookies of your choice
      • Sprinkles of your choice
      • Large 18" pastry bag
      • Large plain round pastry tip

      Make the Vanilla Bean Marshmallow Frosting:

      1. Wipe the stainless steel bowl and whisk of an electric mixer with a paper towel dampened with lemon juice to eliminate any trace of grease. Put the egg whites, sugar, corn syrup, cream of tartar in the bowl and put it over a saucepan of barely simmering water (be sure the bottom of the bowl is not touching the water). Whisk constantly but gently until the mixture reaches 130°F (54°C), about 7 minutes depending on the temperature your egg whites were to begin with.
      2. Transfer the bowl to the mixer. Beat the mixture on low speed for 2 minutes, then increase the speed to medium and beat for 2 more minutes. Increase the speed to hight and beat until very thick and glossy, about 5 minutes. Add the vanilla bean (or extract) and beat well.
      3. This frosting is best used right away, but it will keep covered at room temperature for up to an hour (once it's piped into the cookies it's fine, but just for ideal spreading/piping consistency).

      Assemble the Marshmallow Sprinkle Sandwiches:

      1. Line a baking sheet with wax paper and lay 6 of the cookies inside-up on the wax paper.
      2. Fill a large pastry bag fitted with a large plain round tip (I use Ateco ) with the prepared Marshmallow Frosting and pipe a big dollop on top. Place another cookie, right side up, on top and repeat with another dollop and cookie.

      Make the Chocolate Coating:

      1. In a double boiler, or in a microwave-safe bowl, melt the chocolate and oil until smooth, stirring occasionally.
      2. Carefully dip one end of each sandwich in the chocolate coating and lay back down on the wax paper. Sprinkle the chocolate areas with your favourite sprinkles, tossing the sprinkles to cover the sides. Let sit to firm up.
      3. Once the sandwiches are firmed up, you can transfer them to a plate and collect the remaining sprinkles to put back in their bottles.
      4. Best enjoyed right away.
      Sweetapolita's Notes:
      • You can (and totally should) also make these with ice cream--yum! Vanilla, Cotton Candy, Bubble Gum, Cookies & Creme . . .  imagine?
      • If you felt like using a more home-baked "cookie-ish" cookie, you could make these chocolate fudge cookies (or your favourite recipe) and create the ultimate homemade sprinkle sandwich.
      • For the chocolate cookies, I used store-bought ice cream sandwich cookies, which I found at Bulk Barn (Canada) in the cookie aisle in a single sleeve. I tried to find something similar online to show you, but I couldn't find the exact shape/style--you can check out your local bulk food shop, or you can use always use Nabisco Famous Chocolate Wafer Cookies found at grocery stores, which are round.
      • For the Marshmallow Filling, I used Nielsen-Massey Vanilla Bean Paste to flavour.
      • For the chocolate dipping, I used Callebaut Milk Chocolate Callets and I also did some with Semisweet Chocolate Callets. White chocolate would also be divine! And truth be told, you can use any chocolate you love--fancy or not. I just tend to use the Callebaut for everything I do because it's my favourite for frosting, brownies, cake, etc. so I keep a lot of it on hand. And I find that once you get used to the good stuff in baking, it's hard to go back!
      • The sprinkles used in this post are all from my online shop: Sugar Fairy, Fairy Tale, Frosted and Pastel Dreams but, needless to say, ANY sprinkle in the universe would look awesome on these.
      • The gorgeous, jumbo shimmery white balls (Crispy Dragee Pearlescent White - 700 g) and pink balls (Crispy Dragee Pearlescent Pink - 700 g) are crunchy krispie and milk chocolate inside (not bubblegum). So gorgeous!
      • For those who love nifty little kitchenwares, I found the ivory ceramic "cupcake liner" ramekins last week at HomeSense (Canada), and the turquoise "Fresh Day, Fresh Start" mug at Indigo online.  Spring is the best time for kitchenware shopping!
      See you soon, my friends!  
      • Rosie Alyea

      Banana-Graham S'mores Cake Supreme 0

      bananasmors581 Cake! Hello, hello from the land of frosting, flour and, well, flippin' deliciousness. ;) This week has been busy, busy with baking, order-packing, and of course it wouldn't be real life if a few personal issues weren't sprinkled in there too, right? Haha, oh my gosh, life is crazy. You know? The sprinkle shop has been awesome, though. It's been a whole other outlet of creativity and, truth be told, I just love running a small business. Blogging and writing are very much suited to my sometimes-introverted personality, but sometimes I feel a little out of sorts, and I realize that perhaps it's a bit much, you know, always being in my own bubble. Having a shop, albeit online, has given me a chance to really interact with customers, in a way that I find really fulfilling. Soon, I will need to hire some staff and that excites me! Okay, so back to cake . . . this weekend I had some fun with one of my favourite cake-components--toasted marshmallow! You might remember this Campfire Delight Cake from quite sometime ago, as well as the new version I created for the book (the Campfire Deluxe Cake), both of which boast some kind of toasted marshmallow concoction. But what I have been (very randomly) craving lately is a combination of the classic flavour of s'mores but paired with banana cake--I had never experienced those flavours together in any way, but I could almost taste them when I sat and thought about it. And if that wasn't reason enough to make it happen, I realized that I have never done any kind of banana cake for the blog before, and was certainly time! buildcake581 So here's what going on inside this tower of banana-grahama goodness: 4 thin layers of moist banana cake (even you have to just make that on its own, it's worth it--pair it with the classic cream cheese frosting or even a malted chocolate or dark chocolate frosting . . . ), 2 layers of dark chocolate cake, sugared graham crumbs, a new version of the toasted marshmallow frosting (made with our homemade take on marshmallow Fluff) and dark chocolate frosting. Then we cover the whole thing in the dark frosting and top it with some graham crumbs, marshmallow poofs and then a few edible gold stars if the urge strikes (which, of course, it did). bananacakecool481 So to make the 6-layer cake, we just bake 3 cake layers and torte them into 6 (this is one of my favourite ways to add extra magic to a layer cake). We do 2 banana layers and one chocolate layer (it's the one-bowl, so quick and easy)--since this cake has a lot of dark chocolate happening, I chose to do more banana than chocolate. Plus I die for banana cake! As I've mentioned before, my mom wasn't much of a cake maker (she was big into pie-making), so she used to buy the boxed "snacking cake" mixes--remember those? One of my favourites was, of course, the banana cake, so I have really fond memories of coming home from school and smelling that smell only a banana cake can create. You know the one? My mother-in-law makes the homemade version, and there's nothing better. finalgrahamcrumbs581 So for the graham crumble that we put inside the layers, I have done it two ways--using actual store-bought crumbs, and the crumbling actual graham cracker squares (you know, those incredibly addicting perforated ones?). I recommend starting with the crackers and breaking them down so they are in small bits, because they keep their crunch (even though we bake both versions up with butter and brown sugar, so they start with some crunch before putting them into the cake). It's kind of like baking a deconstructed cheesecake crust and tossing it in the cake for the authentic s'mores graham flavour. toastedmarsh581b For the Toasted Marshmallow Frosting we start with, well, toasted marshies of course! And, oh my gosh, speaking of incredibly nostalgic and warm and fuzzy smells in the house. This is unreal! Oh, and funny thing--not all marshmallows toast up the same. I have tried brands like Jet-Puffed, that expand like crazy when toasted, and the insides are much gooier than the generic brand I used above. You can also see that even after being toasted on both sides, these guys stayed firm. In the end, it all works out, but I found these ones to be slightly stringier in the process, and then once blended with the rest of the frosting, they worked just fine. Just a note, though. I might recommend you go with Jet-Puffed brand if you have it available to you, or another name brand. marshrad So here is the finished toasted marshmallow frosting and, needless to say, it's heaven on earth. As I mentioned above, instead of using any kind of store-bought marshmallow crème, we make our own batch of billowy marshmallow frosting and fold it in to our buttery, toasted marshmallow base. I won't lie--it is a few extra steps, and goos up a few extra bowls, but it's so wonderfully fluffy. Less sticky, more fluffy, which makes for a more spreadable delight. fudgefrostingbowl581 The frosting I used was the recent Dark Chocolate Fudge Frosting (from the Dark & Dreamy Chocolate Fudge Cake), which I've sweetened up a bit. The frosting was rather, um, intense, and too much intensity with these other hard-earned flavours happening, might be problematic. There is still a definitely chocolate component, to the cake, and you could technically use milk chocolate for a very classic s'mores taste. I just tend to find that milk chocolate frosting ends up being quite sweet, but that's not a bad thing. slicedbanana So there we have it! Our magically messy, gooey, crunchy, billowy Banana-Graham S'mores Cake Supreme (I try not to over-use the word "supreme" in my cake titles, but when there are so many steps, I think I better!). I also want to mention that I initially intended for the top marshmallow poofs to be much gooier looking with charred tops, but my culinary torch was out of butane and I was in the zone and ready to finish the cake. So what I did to improvise was pipe the poofs onto a foil-lined baking sheet, broiled them for a few moments (watching super carefully), and then placed them on the finished cake once they cooled. The result was more of a meringue-looking confectionery, rather than frosted top, so in the instructions I have include the torch version. In person, the little gold edible stars mixed with the graham crumbs is unicorn-magical, especially when the light reflects off of them (would be wonderful with the glow of birthday candles!). Let's make the cake! And, guys, if you're on Instagram, Facebook or Twitter, I'd love to see your creations! You can find me or just tag me with @sweetapolita--it always makes my day to see your cakes! xo

      Banana-Graham S’mores Cake Supreme

      Moist layers of banana cake, deep dark chocolate cake, sugared graham crumbs, toasted marshmallow frosting, dark chocolate frosting, more graham crumbs, marshmallow poofs and edible gold stars.

      For the Banana Cake layers (2 layers):

      • 2 cups 270 g all-purpose flour
      • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
      • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
      • 1/2 teaspoon salt
      • 1/2 cup 115 g unsalted butter, softened
      • 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon vegetable oil
      • 1 cup 200 g superfine sugar (or regular granulated sugar)
      • 1/4 cup 60 g light brown sugar
      • 2 eggs (room temperature)
      • 1 cup 240 ml buttermilk, room temperature
      • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
      • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
      • 2 medium-sized bananas (1 cup, mashed)

      For the Chocolate Cake layer:

      • 3/4 cup 95 g all-purpose flour
      • 3/4 cup 150 g superfine sugar
      • 1/3 cup 40 g dark Dutch-process cocoa powder
      • 1 teaspoon baking soda
      • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
      • 1/2 teaspoon salt
      • 1/2 cup 120 ml buttermilk, room temperature
      • 1/3 cup 80 ml coffee, hot
      • 3 tablespoons 45 ml vegetable oil
      • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
      • 1 egg (room temperature)

      For the Graham Crumble:

      • 1 1/2 cups 150 g/about 20 square crackers graham crackers, crushed
      • 1/4 cup 57 g unsalted butter
      • 1 tablespoon brown sugar

      For the Dark Chocolate Fudge Frosting:

      • 2 1/4 cups 510 g unsalted butter, softened
      • 1 1/2 cups 190 g confectioners' sugar
      • 1/2 cup 60 g premium dark Dutch-process cocoa powder
      • 1/2 cup 120 ml hot water
      • 1/2 cup 120 ml sour cream
      • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract (I used Nielsen-Massey)
      • Generous pinch of salt
      • 12 ounces 360 g premium dark (but not extra dark) chocolate, chopped or chips, melted (I used Callebaut Callets)

      For the Toasted Marshmallow Frosting:

      • 30 large (225 g white marshmallows)
      • 3/4 cup 170 g unsalted butter, room temperature
      • 1 1/2 cups 190 g confectioners' sugar
      • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract or vanilla bean paste (I used Neilsen-Massey Vanilla Bean Paste)
      • Pinch of salt
      • 5 egg whites
      • 1 1/4 cups 250 g superfine sugar
      • 1 tablespoon light corn syrup (I use Crown White Lily Light Corn Syrup, or in the USA you can use Karo Light Corn Syrup)
      • 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar

      For the Marshmallow Frosting (for top of cake):

      • 4 egg whites
      • 1 cup 200 g superfine sugar
      • 1 tablespoon light corn syrup (see Sweetapolita's Notes)
      • 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
      • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract or vanilla bean paste (I use Nielsen-Massey Vanilla Bean Paste)

      You will also need:

      • 6 " pastry comb (I used this one)
      • Large disposable piping bag (I use Ateco 18")
      • Culinary torch (such as this one)
      • Graham crumbs for decorating (optional)
      • Edible gold stars (optional, but I use these)

      For the Banana Cake layers:

      1. Preheat oven to 350° F (180°C). Spray two 8-inch round cake pans with cooking spray and line with parchment rounds.
      2. Sift the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt into a medium bowl and set aside.
      3. In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter, oil, sugars and vanilla on medium-high speed until pale and fluffy, about 7 minutes. Lower the speed to medium and add the eggs, one at a time, mixing until each is fully incorporated before adding the next (about 30 seconds). Add the lemon juice and vanilla.
      4. Lower the speed to lowest setting and alternate dry ingredients and the buttermilk into creamed mixture, beginning and ending with dry ingredients (dry, wet, dry, wet, dry). Mix until just incorporated and remove bowl from stand mixer. Using a large stainless steel whisk, stir/whisk the mashed banana into the mixture--you can use use some strength and blend well, ensuring all of the ingredients are well mixed. (If you don't have a large stainless whisk, you can fold the banana mixture in using a rubber spatula until incorporated.)
      5. Divide the batter evenly between the two prepared pans. If possible, weigh the batter in each cake pan for accuracy. Smooth the batter with small offset palette knife, and bake until a toothpick or skewer comes out clean, about 25 minutes (this can vary depending on oven, but don't over-bake). Let pans cool on wire rack for 20 minutes, then invert cakes onto racks, gently, peeling away parchment rounds. Let cool completely.

      For the Chocolate Cake layer:

      1. Preheat oven to 350° F (180°C). Spray an 8-inch round cake pan with cooking spray and line bottom with a parchment round.
      2. Into a medium bowl, sift flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.
      3. In a medium bowl or measuring cup, combine the buttermilk, coffee, oil, egg and vanilla.
      4. Add liquid mixture to dry ingredients and whisk until smooth, about 1 minute. Pour the batter into prepared cake pan.
      5. Bake until a wooden pick inserted into the centre of the cupcake comes out with a only a few crumbs, about 20 minutes. Try not to over-bake. Let cake cool in pan on a wire rack for 10 minutes, and then turn onto rack to cool completely. (Cake layers will keep wrapped tightly in plastic wrap at room temperature for up to 2 days.)

      For the Graham Crumble:

      1. Preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C). Line a baking sheet with a silicone baking mat or parchment paper.
      2. Put the graham crumbs into a medium-sized mixing bowl. In a small microwaveable container, melt the butter and brown sugar. Pour the melted butter mixture into the bowl with the crumbs and stir until all of the crumbs are moistened (think wet sand), and transfer to the prepared baking sheet in an even layer.
      3. Bake the crumb mixture for 8 minutes, stirring/moving them around a bit halfway through. Place the tray on a wire rack to cool completely. (The crumb mixture will keep in an airtight container or resealable zip-top bag for 3 days).

      For the Dark Chocolate Fudge Frosting:

      1. In a bowl of stand mixer fitted with paddle attachment, or with a handheld mixer, beat the butter on medium speed until pale and fluffy, about 6 minutes. Sift together the confectioners' sugar and cocoa powder. Reduce to speed to low, and add the confectioners' sugar, cocoa powder, water, sour cream, vanilla, and salt and beat until incorporated, about 1 minute. Increase the speed to medium and beat for 2 more minutes.
      2. Add the melted chocolate and beat on medium speed until smooth, about 1 minute. (Frosting will keep covered well-sealed with plastic wrap or in an airtight container for up to 2 days or in refrigerator for 5 days.)

      For the Toasted Marshmallow Frosting:

      1. Wipe the stainless steel bowl and whisk of an electric mixer with a paper towel dampened with lemon juice to eliminate any trace of grease. Put the egg whites, sugar, corn syrup, cream of tartar in the bowl and put it over a saucepan of barely simmering water (be sure the bottom of the bowl is not touching the water). Whisk constantly but gently until the mixture reaches 130°F (54°C), 7-9 minutes depending on the temperature your egg whites were to begin with.
      2. Transfer the bowl to the mixer. Beat the mixture on low speed for 2 minutes, then increase the speed to medium and beat for 2 more minutes. Increase the speed to hight and beat until very thick and glossy, about 5 minutes. Set aside.
      3. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil and spray lightly with cooking spray. Arrange the marshmallows on the prepared sheet in a single layer. Broil the marshmallows, watching (very) closely, until they are toasted and sightly charred, about 3 minutes. Remove the baking sheet from the oven and, using tongs, carefully turn the marshmallows over. Return the sheet to the oven and broil for 1 to 2 minutes more. Remove the sheet from the oven and let cool.
      4. Spray the inside of your food processor lightly with cooking spray. Transfer the cooled marshmallows into the food processor (you may need a greased rubber spatula--some marshmallow brands become much gooier than others).
      5. In another bowl for your mixer (if you don't have another bowl, you can either use a hand mixer for this step, or transfer your marshmallow frosting to another bowl), beat the butter on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 6 minutes. Reduce the speed to lowest setting and gradually add the confectioners' sugar, vanilla and salt. Increase the speed to medium-high and beat until fluffy, about 3 minutes.
      6. Transfer the buttercream mixture to the food processor (just put right on top of marshmallows). Pulse a few times until the marshmallows are dispersed but there are still pieces of toasted marshmallow remaining. Transfer the mixture back to the mixer bowl and add the prepared egg whites/marshmallow frosting mixture. Beat on low speed until combined, but don't over-beat, as it will deflate some of the gloriously puffy marshmallow frosting. Frosting will keep covered at room temperature for up to 1 day (for ideal spreading consistency).

      For the Marshmallow Frosting (for top of cake--make this right before you're going to pipe onto the top of the cake):

      1. Wipe the stainless steel bowl and whisk of an electric mixer with a paper towel dampened with lemon juice to eliminate any trace of grease. Put the egg whites, sugar, corn syrup, cream of tartar in the bowl and put it over a saucepan of barely simmering water (be sure the bottom of the bowl is not touching the water). Whisk constantly but gently until the mixture reaches 130°F (54°C), 7-9 minutes depending on the temperature your egg whites were to begin with.
      2. Transfer the bowl to the mixer. Beat the mixture on low speed for 2 minutes, then increase the speed to medium and beat for 2 more minutes. Increase the speed to hight and beat until very thick and glossy, about 5 minutes. Add the vanilla and beat well.
      3. This frosting is best used right away, but it will keep covered at room temperature for up to an hour (once it's on the cake it's fine, but just for ideal spreading/piping consistency).

      Assembly of the Banana-Graham S'mores Cake Supreme:

      1. Cut each of your 3 cake layers each once horizontally with a long, serrated knife, so you have a total of 6 thin layers. Put a nonslip square on a turntable (if using), followed by a large piece of wax paper, topped with another nonslip square smaller than your cake. Place a thin 8-inch round cake board or larger cake plate on the turntable and place the first banana cake layer on top. Spread about 1/2 cup of the fudge frosting on top (just a very thin layer). Sprinkle the layer of frosting with one-fourth of the graham crumble. Spread one-fourth of the toasted marshmallow frosting on top of the crumble. Place a chocolate cake layer on top (cut side up). Spread one-fourth of the toasted marshmallow frosting on top, followed by another fourth of the crumble. Place another banana cake layer on top and spread another thin layer of the fudge frosting, followed by one-fourth of crumble and then another fourth of the toasted marshmallow frosting. Place another banana cake layer on top and spread a thick layer of only the fudge frosting. Place the second chocolate layer on top and spread a thin layer of the fudge frosting on top, followed by the remaining crumble and remaining toasted marshmallow frosting. Place the final banana cake layer on top, face down. If your cake feels stable, you can go ahead and cover the cake in a thin layer of the fudge frosting (crumb coat). If it feels wobbly, cover the cake with plastic wrap and use your hands to press everything into place, then chill until firm, about 30 minutes, and then do the crumb coat (you will then want to chill the cake again until the crumb coat firms up, about another 30 minutes).
      2. Remove the cake from the refrigerator again and cover with a thick, even layer of frosting. With the cake on the turntable, hold a pastry comb against the side of the cake with one hand and rotate the turntable once all the way around, in a fluid motion. (If you aren't pleased with the way it looks, you can apply more frosting and repeat.)
      3. Make your Marshmallow Frosting for the top of the cake.
      4. Cut about 2" off of the tip of a disposable pastry bag (with no pastry tip) and pipe some marshmallow "poofs" on the top of the cake by holding the bag, tip-down, directly above the spot you want the poof, squeeze the bag gently for a few seconds and then release and lift up and away. Repeat all over the top of the cake.
      5. Adorn the bottom perimeter of the cake (and any open areas on the top of the cake) with a few handfuls of graham crumbs, followed by some edible gold stars. The cake will keep at room temperature for up to 2 days, refrigerated for up to 3 days. Best enjoyed at room temperature.
      6. Hooray! We did it! Damn, we're good at this. xo
      Sweetapolita's Notes:
      • I use Fat Daddio’s Anodized Aluminum Round Cake Pans for all of my cake layers, most often the 8-inch x 2-inch round pans. I prefer to bake more shallow layers so that we don't have to over-bake the cake to cook the inside, and these shallow 2" pans work well.
      • You certainly don't need to use a pastry comb to create this cake, but if you do, I recommend the taller version that Wilton offers (here). They offer a few variations so you can experiment with which look you like best. The cakes we make these days always tend to be on the tall side, so it really comes in handy when you want a tidy looking texture on the cake.
      • For a quicker version of this cake, you could always keep it at the 3 layers (instead of torting into 6), omit the top poofs (so not having to make the marshmallow frosting twice), and you could even forget the textured sides and just frost in a simple, yummy way. I know you won't hear any complaints!
      • If you would like to use the edible gold stars, you can find them here in my shop!
      • Rosie Alyea
      Liquid error: Could not find asset snippets/sh_sbve-theme-snippet.liquid
      Sale

      Unavailable

      Sold Out